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Archive for August, 2009

The Trinity Story

Monday, August 31st, 2009

The idea for the Trinity wines started with a desire to create something special; something unique that the Taboo food and beverage team would be proud to present to its discerning clientele.

It is quite common for Ontario wineries to provide “Relabels”, i.e. finished wines in bottle, which are then relabeled to the purchasers’ specifications. We clearly did not want to go this route. We were very interested in creating our “own” wines, unique in the marketplace and just another factor that set’s Taboo apart from its’ competition.

The decision was made to approach Cave Spring Cellars, in Jordan/Ontario to work on a partnership which resulted in the Trinity Private Label.  Based on prior common projects by the sommelier and Cave Spring, a very good working relationship had already been established. There was much to be gained by working with one of the pioneering Niagara Peninsula vintners, who have had an outstanding track record since 1985.

Another positive factor was the availability of parcels of unassembled red wines lots from the 2007 Niagara vintage that were aging in the cellars of CSC. This red wine vintage was by far the best ever for the Ontario wine industry, based on the almost perfect growing conditions of 2007 and the increased vine age of the vineyards. Another relatively recent positive development is the gained experience and knowledge of the Niagara vignerons, as they had gained a better understanding of their local terroir and winemaking with the other two other recent exceptional Ontario red wine years of 2002 and 2005.

The Taboo Trinity Chardonnay is a blend of parcels from the 2008 vintage which in the opinion of many is a much more typical Niagara vintage for white wines, showing more “Cut”, i.e. acidity and structure which is demonstrated with a certain liveliness of the finished wine.

The wines were assembled in two sessions: one in Jordan in February and a secondary one in Toronto in April. The “tasting panel” consisted of Angelo Pavan, the highly regarded winemaker at Cave Spring, Tom Pennachetti, Director of Marketing and Sales for CSC and a member of the founding family, Andrea Young, Director of Food and Beverage at Taboo Resort (International Sommelier Guild Level 1) and Markus Carl, Sommelier at Taboo.

The 2007 Taboo Trinity Red blend was established with a 50% stake of Merlot, 30 % of Syrah and a 20 % part of Cabernet Franc. The Merlot provides the soft accessibility of fruit; the Syrah adds structure and spice on the finish and the Cabernet Franc contributes a certain earthiness and very pleasant ripe herbaceous aspect to the finished wine.

The 2008 Taboo Trinity Chardonnay is actually a blend of 4 grape varieties, 80% Chardonnay, 10% Chardonnay Musque, 5% Auxerrois and 5% Sauvignon Blanc. Just as in the red blend the mélange of grapes each contributes to the total: the Chardonnay provides weight and body, the Chardonnay Musque adds a flowery, almost Muscat like fruit overlay, the Auxerrois (Old Vines) makes itself known with a low acid lushness and the Sauvignon Blanc is present for an aromatic lift of flavour on the finish.

The name “Trinity” was chosen to represent the three grape varieties in each blend, even though it is a slight misnomer for the finished Chardonnay Blend. We decided to bottle both wines under screwcap to keep the wines vibrant and to preserve the fruit character of the respective blends.

The wines are meant to go with a wide variety of food, and while perfectly delicious as young bottled wines will begin to shine in the next couple of years, as bottle age harmonizes their flavours.

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